Details on the XStreamHD satellite service are emerging here at CES, and it looks to be much more than just a satellite service. The basic system has three components, a Media Server and a Media Receiver, and, of course, the satellite dish. In addition to receiving HD content via satellite, in resolutions up to full 1080p with 7.1 DTS-HD Master Audio, it also functions as an OTA DVR with three ATSC tuners. And it turns out it is a hybrid service. Newer titles will be delivered via satellite – but older, or, as they say ‘vintage’, titles may be delivered via broadband.
The content is stored in the Media Server and is distributed through the home via Ethernet, up to GigE. The client device can be the XStreamHD Media Receiver or any DLNA v1.5 enabled device. Up to four devices are supported simultaneously. It seems to use a TiVo Suggestions-like mechanism to learn your preferences to decide which content to automatically store. It does appear to be a cached system, not on demand, so you’d only be able to watch the content already in your ‘Virtual Personal Library’.
The Media Server has two drive bays which will support 500GB and 1TB Segate drives, for up to 2TB of internal storage. And there is an eSATA interface to enable additional, external storage. So capacity doesn’t seem to be an issue, just how much you’re willing to pay. There is also a USB port ‘for MP3 downloads’, which I’ll need to get more details on. Now, this is the weirdest feature:
Includes a feature-rich Personal PBX business-class phone system; also supports VoIP calls and offers free calls between XStreamHD subscribers
I definitely need to get more info on this when I hit their booth tomorrow. That just seems like an odd feature to be included.
The basic solution will be available in 4Q08 for an introductory price of $399. Of course, the value will really depend on the content that is available.
CES is huge, spread across multiple locations. I’ve been at the LVCC so far, XStreamHD (and Sling and others) are at the Sands. I’m planning to spend the day at the Sands tomorrow.
The press release:
Jan 08, 2008 08:00
XStreamHD(TM) Unveils First-Ever Transport Network to Deliver High-Definition Movies, Music, and More Directly to the Home at CES 2008
Witness the XStreamHD Revolution in Action with Live Demos Featuring The Latest Content from Leading Studios and More at Sands Booth #71838 XStreamHD Press Conference on Tuesday, January 8 in Venetian Casanova 503 To Feature Two-Time Academy-Award Winner Michael Douglas
MCLEAN, Va. –(Business Wire)– Jan. 8, 2008 XStreamHD, revolutionizing the delivery and distribution of Full HD entertainment to the home, today unveiled at CES 2008 (Sands Booth #71838) the first-ever transport network to deliver movies, TV, music, electronic games, and more in Full HD (1080p) video and 7.1 channels of DTS-HD Master Audio(TM), directly to consumers, via satellite.
“We’ve worked hard to address the real needs consumers have and find the solutions they’re looking for. What they’re missing is access to Full HD content,” said XStreamHD Founder and CEO George Gonzalez. “Today is all about Full HD. We are pleased to announce that we are the first to deliver Full HD and 7.1 channels of lossless audio directly to your home.”
The XStreamHD Revolution
XStreamHD is leading the Full HD revolution with the first transport network to bring 1080p video and 7.1 channels of lossless audio directly to the home via satellite. Never before has there been a home theater experience that combines all of the features, quality, value, and convenience that consumers want. XStreamHD offers affordable access to the highest quality HD movies, music, broadcast TV, electronic games, and more – without the limitations of programming schedules, storage space, or physical media, and without the hassles of video rental stores, slow mail service, or out-of-stock titles. With XStreamHD, consumers will never miss the new releases or the broadcast HD content they love. The hottest movies and new releases are delivered via satellite, while vintage titles may be delivered over a broadband Internet connection.
With XStreamHD, consumers can build a customized, unique, and unparalleled in-home entertainment network and enjoy the content they want most, when it’s most convenient, anywhere in the home, and at the quality today’s home theaters were designed to support. Only XStreamHD’s proprietary technology delivers video in Full HD (1080p) – twice the quality of current cable and satellite offerings – and up to 7.1 channels of lossless audio, achieving sound quality that is identical to the studio master and surpassing any other direct-to-home service available.
The complete XStreamHD solution includes three core components that are quickly and easily installed by the user or, if preferred, by a qualified technician. The first is a small outdoor satellite antenna that captures multiple streams of Full HD content delivered by XStreamHD through existing standard geosynchronous satellites. From the dish, titles are stored centrally in the XStreamHD Media Server located inside the home. The Media Server stores your pre-selected titles in your Virtual Personal Library until you access them with any XStreamHD Media Receiver or DLNA-compliant device throughout your XStreamHD home network.
Pricing & Availability
The XStreamHD solution will be available to consumers in early Q4 2008. The introductory price for a complete XStreamHD home solution, including a Media Server and a Media Receiver, is available to initial subscribers starting at just $399.
Featured System Highlights
– Satellite delivery of Full HD 1080p video, MPEG-2 or MPEG-4/H.264 in 4:3 or 16:9 screen formats
– Satellite delivery of up to 7.1 channels 96kHz/24bits of lossless DTS-HD(TM) Master Audio
– View four Full HD video streams simultaneously throughout the home
– Learns users’ choices and preferences to adopt their entertainment profile and continuously updates the Virtual Personal Library with titles they’re likely to enjoy
– Equipped with three ATSC tuners and a Network Video Recorder for viewing and recording three HDTV broadcasts at the same time – even while watching a fourth selection from your Virtual Personal Library(TM)
– Patent Pending Adaptive Recording(TM) ensures accurate recording of HDTV programs from start to finish, even if broadcast schedules change or are delayed
– Easy-to-use on-screen menus to manage content preferences, parental controls, spending limits
– DLNA v1.5 certified to integrate all compatible devices on the XStreamHD network
– Dual slide-in drive bays enable scalable storage featuring Seagate(R) Technology hard drive storage – 500GB, 1 TB, 2 TB options – and the ability to configure an external storage subsystem via the eSATA interface
– Includes a feature-rich Personal PBX business-class phone system; also supports VoIP calls and offers free calls between XStreamHD subscribers
– Uses gigabit Ethernet (GigE) permitting the transfer of HD video and audio at 1 gbps throughout the home
– HDMI interface simplifies installation and ensures signal integrity for vibrant 1080p video
– Front panel USB port for MP3 audio downloads
XStreamHD @ CES
The XStreamHD solution is currently set up at CES in Sands Booth #71838, with live demos at the top and bottom of every hour featuring the latest content from leading studios. Visitors to the booth can sign up to become an XStreamVIP and gain access to the exclusive XStreamHD community. Demos are also running simultaneously in the booths of XStreamHD’s strategic partners, DTS, Inc. (Las Vegas Convention Center, South Hall 1 #21913) and Seagate Technology (Las Vegas Convention Center, South Hall 3 #30659).
The solution will be introduced live to the media at the exclusive, invitation-only XStreamHD press conference featuring two-time Academy Award winner Michael Douglas on Tuesday, January 8 at 11 AM in Venetian Casanova 503, and at the Seagate BlogHaus in the Bellagio on Wednesday, January 9 at 6:30 PM. For more information, an invitation to the XStreamHD VIP press events, or to set up a media interview, please contact Ilana Zalika at izalika@XStreamHD.com or +1 (732) 266-5219.
XStreamHD is leading an HD revolution, setting a new standard for the delivery and distribution of Full HD entertainment throughout the home. Privately funded and five years in the making, XStreamHD is led by George Gonzalez, a recognized pioneer in broadband and satellite communications. XStreamHD’s executive team and board of directors include veterans of the Fortune 500 who have been instrumental in shaping the television, entertainment, telecom, and consumer markets. For more information, visit http://www.XStreamHD.com or call +1 (703) 852-1300.
Ilana Zalika, 732-266-5219